Forbes India 15th Anniversary Special

Bantwal Ramesh Baliga, Watertec's CEO: The Epitome of Exemplary Leadership

Watertec is not only the market leader in the polymer-based bath fittings space but also one of India's fastest-growing end-to-end bathroom solutions

Published: Oct 20, 2020 02:39:09 PM IST

Bantwal Ramesh Baliga, Watertec's CEO: The Epitome of Exemplary Leadership
If you have met Bantwal Ramesh Baliga, you know how much he enjoys getting off to a quick start. He’s a man of action and since he took over as the CEO of Watertec, the polymer products company has metamorphosed into a total bathroom solutions provider, representing quality, latest designs, and manufacturing excellence.

Watertec’s journey began in 1997 with a single-minded mission - to revolutionize bath spaces, by replacing substandard metal fittings and accessories with Superior Virgin Grade Engineering Polymer Products. Today, Watertec is not only the market leader in the polymer-based bath fittings space but also one of India’s fastest-growing end-to-end bathroom solutions companies with its unique 'H2O Promise' that offers Health, Hygiene and Original designs.

“Every industry needs innovation for it to thrive. The innovators may find the initial struggle a bit overwhelming but the results can be astounding and very rewarding for those with perseverance. This has been true for Watertec too. Initially, the company may have found it difficult to make people see the logic behind us moving away from metal fittings and accessories and produce polymer based products. However, with persistent effort we have been able to convince our customers that this is the future. The conviction we have always had in our product quality has of course helped,” says a beaming Baliga, one of the most well-rounded and diversified profiles in the industry.

With exemplary working experience of over 3 decades and successful stints at many reputed organizations, Baliga has evolved into a truly exceptional leader over the years. However, it’s not just his impressive CV and millennial-friendly appeal that has made him so popular. He’s also an exceptional orator who can command a room of any size through his speeches. He comes across as an articulate and genuinely accessible personality, who also harbors a deep passion for “big ideas”.

Leading from the front, he has industriously shaped the growth path of Watertec over the last few years with a textbook-style focus on the 3Ps - Product, People, and Promotions. The company's emphasis on a strong distribution and dealer network has also been a key part of the growth strategy.

With this astute leader at the helm, Watertec has launched a plethora of avant-garde products, such as polymer faucets in nickel-chrome finish and bath and shower mixers in CPVC for concealed and exposed applications. This is a first for the industry. Besides, it has also broadened the portfolio by adding sanitary ware, floor drains and fittings for public washrooms.

Being a progressive people’s leader, Baliga is a firm believer in people-centric management. He engages directly with all the employees and tries to bring the best out of the organization’s human assets. Under his brilliant headship, Watertec has introduced several people-oriented training programs as well as productivity-oriented training modules that motivate the employees and help them to chart a growth plan for themselves.

The highly impassioned forerunner is extremely focused when it comes to numbers. He closely monitors the performance of the company based on targets and data to ensure fiscal prudence. Under his command, the company has been successful in achieving a turnover of INR 1,400 crores in 5 years, based on year-on-year growth of 27%. In the coming years, Watertec is looking to branch out into new markets by launching an array of chrome plating products, stainless steel faucets, and technology-based water-saving products.

“It gives me immense satisfaction to see that the collective efforts of the Watertec team have helped us grow fast and take big strides in the industry. When I joined Watertec I could see that the company had many strengths which it hadn’t really been optimally using. I just focussed on those strengths and added a bit of my own expertise with product development, people skills that I have acquired over the last couple of decades, and promotional ideas which have really clicked with our various target audiences. The results, as they say, speak for themselves,” concludes Bantwal Ramesh Baliga, the man who has proven himself to be an epitome of exemplary leadership.

Watertec is a market leader that devises and distributes functional solutions. Some of its key product ranges include:

AFFORDABLE LUXURY - AQCETO: The premium Bath fittings & accessories range, created with the aim of enabling the ultimate modern living experience. Aqceto’s stylish and versatile range has already made inroads in the most demanding markets across India. Put together by an elite panel of world class designers, architects and engineers, every product bearing the Aqceto label reflects our ethos and is crafted to perfection. The Aqceto range of faucets & accessories comes with stunning chrome and PVD finishes, which are both eye catching and utility-based. High plating thickness provides extreme tolerance to both climate and water conditions and 96 hours + salt spray test ensures that our finishes are highly durable.

CONCEPT BATHROOMS - WATERTEC - CHROME PLATED RANGE: This comprehensive range of bathroom fittings is entirely Made in India with the objective of offering economical bathroom and concept solutions. These modern products are eco-friendly and have water saving features. We also manufacture a complete range of quality faucets, showers with silicone gel, wall mixers, single lever diverters, 3-way diverters, bottle traps, waste couplings and health faucets.

INNOVATION IN ENGINEERING POLYMER – WATERTEC – POLYMER BATH FITTINGS & ACCESSORIES:  An entire range of innovative & new generation polymer bath fittings and accessories that include, taps, valves, showers, faucets, accessories, connection tubes, seat covers and cisterns, the products are made of superior virgin grade engineering polymer that has stood the test of time. With a wide variety of exciting colours to match the décor & tiles, these products have always been an iconic symbol of our brands. The products are stylish, aesthetically appealing and pocket friendly.

PIPES & FITTINGS: our superior range of pipes& fittings is ideal for various applications that can be installed on the surface, slip lined, trench loss, floating & submerged. Offering the convenience of quick assembly and minimum maintenance, these pipes provide durability and efficiency for years together. Certified by all the leading agencies, our high-quality pipe fittings also offer protection from bacterial and fungal growth. They are used in fluid transporting including lifting, transporting, conveying, distributing, disposing or tapping of water, waste – water (drainage & sewage). Compatible with both hot and cold water, these pipes offer a guaranteed smooth operational life for 50 years

HEALTH, HYGIENE & HIGH PERFORMANCE - SANITARY WARE: Our range of sanitary ware includes Closets & Pans, Wash Basins, Urinals, Cisterns and Seat Covers that come in trendy designs and impeccable finishes, at surprisingly affordable prices. The entire range has been designed to keep bath spaces sparkling with a 93% Snow White Finish and a Glaze Finish. The antibacterial protection and the latest flush types keep bath spaces hygienic, germ-free, stain-free and are eco-friendly.

To consolidate its position as a market leader, Watertec has joined hands across the Globe with partners having like-minded vision. Some of these include:

WORLD CLASS EXQUISITE DESIGNS FROM ITALY- RUBINTREE TEOREMA: Rubintree Teorema is a part of the WTS group, which is well known for its world-class taps and faucets that are perfect for residential, hotel and wellness industry use. This Italian brand offers a synthesis of design, usability and quality.

CUTTING EDGE TECHNOLOGY FROM THAILAND- VRH: We have joined hands with Thailand's first and largest Stainless Steel faucet manufacturer. VRH products are certified by all the leading design, quality control and environmental agencies, and have won several awards, including the prestigious Red Dot Design Award.

WORLD CLASS WATER MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS FROM SWITERZERLAND - CONTI+ : In line with our mission to keep raising the bar, we have also partnered with a leading Swiss brand – CONTI+. Headquartered in Switzerland, with presence in 20 countries, Conti+ has been beautifully blending design and technology for over 40 years to deliver innovative solutions for hospitals, hotels, and office and leisure facilities. We are particularly proud to introduce India to a one-of-its-kind CNX Water Management System (WMS), which lets you control up to 150 link taps, showers, wash basin taps and urinal flash valves within a range of 350 meters, with just a touch of a button on the tablet.

Disclaimer: The views, suggestions and opinions expressed here are the sole responsibility of the experts. No Forbes India journalist was involved in the writing and production of this article.